When Tom and I met Lynn and her husband John last September in their gorgeous hometown of Poulsbo, Washington, it felt like we’d been friends forever, even though it was the first time we’d met in person. (Blogging friendships are like that.)
We’d talked about meeting again in December in our town, Woodinville, for some wine tasting, but had to postpone till February, and then again till today because life just kept getting in the way. But finally today we met again, this time in our little town of Woodinville, which has somehow become a wine tasting mecca in the past few years.
The weather couldn’t have been more glorious!
Our first stop was my absolute favorite Woodinville winery, JM Cellars, where we are always treated like old friends and where someone is always enthusiastically educating us about wine, not just filling our glasses with sips of this and that. We’ve been here before a few times, but each time is better than the last!
Today we were treated to owner John himself leading the tour, pouring the wine and sharing his passion. He explained that “ya gotta have big, beautiful doors if you really want to be a winery.” (I didn’t know that!) Here are JM Cellars’ gorgeous brass doors, made by a Seattle artist, and slowly acquiring a purple patina from the acid of the wine.
Speaking of a purple patina, I asked John if I could take a picture of his… on his thumb! Now that is a sign that you’re a true vintner!
Of course Lynn and I had to have a photo of us taken amid the barrels…
Lightweight that I am, I was already feeling the little taste after little taste by this time. And yes, I was already flushing…
After JM Cellars, we went to Woodhouse Family Cellars, which is one of the many “warehouse wineries” in Woodinville.
What I really like about this winery, other than the wine and the very nice guy who taught us all about it…
…is the kitchen…
…and the cooking classes offered at the winery.
Oh, and of course the absolutely incredible (as in, incredible) chocolate that’s offered with the wine.
Wine and chocolate together? Oh, you betcha!
No visit to the wineries of Woodinville can be complete without a visit to the grand dame of local wineries, Chateau Ste Michelle.
Named chateau because… well, because of this!
Not only the wine here is fabulous; the entire grounds are amazing, and on a warm, sunny day like today people come to sip wine and enjoy the grounds with a picnic.
The winery even supplies the corkscrews, one attached to each table!
There’s a concert series at Chateau Ste. Michelle each summer, too – and I’m embarrassed to say that we’ve never been to a concert here, even though we live just a few miles away.
(Reminder to self: look into tickets for Crosby, Still & Nash, playing here is a few weeks…)
We took a tour here, too, of course.
This is a MUCH bigger operation than either of the other two wineries we visited! (Can anyone really visit all 60 Woodinville wineries in one day – or weekend… or month?!)
What a wonderful time we had with Lynn and John! Conversation flows so easily with them and we always have a truly marvelous time whenever we get together with them – whether wine is involved or not! Thanks for coming to our neck of the woods, guys!
And for a special Washington sunny-day-treat, we saw Mt Rainier in all her glory as we drove home from the winery…
…and then again as we drove through Redmond…
…and across Lake Washington…
to pick up Kat from UW so she can spend tomorrow with us at home this weekend.